What are the Changes made in the Legislation of 1976 in the Law Relating to Divorce?

(2) For the first time mental disorder, falling short of idiocy or lunacy has been admitted as a ground for divorce.

(3) The following new grounds of divorce have been made available to the wife,

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(i) Cruelty on the part of the husband.

(ii) Desertion by the husband for two years.

(iii) Repudiation of child marriage (i.e., marriage perfor­med before she was 15 years of age). This should be done after attaining 15 years and before attaining 18 years.

(iv) Expiry of one year without cohabitation after the passing of a decree in her favour for separate maintenance under s. 18 of the Hindu Adoptions and Maintenance Act or of an order for payment of maintenance to her under the Code of Criminal Procedure.

(4) The time limits have been abolished or relaxed with reference to the following grounds to liberalise the provisions as to divorce—

(i) Incurable unsoundness of mind; virulent leprosy and communicable general disease are grounds of divorce. It is no longer necessary to prove that such disabilities existed for 3 years immediately preceding the presentation of the petition.

(ii) Non-compliance with a decree for restitution of conjugal rights. The time limit has been reduced from two years to one year. That is, if there has been non- compliance with the decree for one year a petition for divorce can be maintained.

(iii) Non-resumption of cohabitation after passing of a decree for judicial separation. Time limit is reduced from two years to one year.

5 (a) A divorce petition can now be filed one year after the marriage. Previously, the waiting period was three years.

(b) A person who has secured divorce can now marry as soon as the decree becomes final, i.e. soon after the expiry of the time for filing an appeal or after the appeal is dismissed. Formerly there was a waiting period of one year after the passing of the decree by the Court of first instance.

Such are the changes that have been made in the sphere of divorce by the legislation of 1976.